Have you recently received an estimate for a home remodeling project in Seguin or McQueeney Texas? Did it seem high to you? Maybe you’re researching a project you’d like to have completed in the coming months and wanted to know rough costs?
Depending on the scope and scale of your particular project you could be looking at an estimate with costs of $5,000 – $100,000+ or more. Some homeowners just aren’t prepared for that kind of sticker shock when it comes to remodeling their home.
It’s not always a case of the contractor being high-priced, sometimes the homeowners, just don’t understand what’s actually involved on the part of the contractor to complete the work they want done.
To make the problem worse in the home remodeling world, there are many guys with pickup trucks masquerading as professional remodeling contractors. Often unlicensed and uninsured they are able to grossly undercut the real professionals in the industry.
If you’ve ever heard a remodeling horror story it usually starts with accepting one of the lowest bids for the project from some fly-by-nighter who made many promises they couldn’t keep. Fortunately, it’s not hard to discern a professional contractors estimate from a hacks estimate if you know what to look for.
Professional Home Remodeling Contractors Have Contracts!
It’s important to have everything in writing when you are going forward with a home remodeling project. This protects you as a homeowner and protects the contractor as a business owner who is about to do extensive work to your home.
Fly-by-night contractors don’t like contracts and often don’t use them. For small projects like repairing a deck, or fixing some drywall this might be acceptable but if you’re spending thousands of dollars on a home remodel you want everything in writing.
If you’ve received an estimate from a professional contractor it will likely be on company letter-head, be several pages long and highly detailed and itemized. Your contract should include the entire scope of the work, the required materials (this can be flexible) along with any special considerations or requests. Fly-by-night contractors don’t do this, it takes way too much time and effort to be this organized.
It’s not cheap to have proper paperwork drafted by a legal professional and it takes considerable time to prepare. If your remodeling estimate looks professional, it’s a good first indication that the contractor behind it might be professional too. If you received your estimate on a scrap piece of paper, with a handwritten quote and vague descriptions, it might be a clue to keep looking.
Professional Remodeling Contractors Are Licensed and Insured
Licensing and proper insurance both for employees and the projects a home remodeling contractor works on are necessary business expenses. You’d think this one would be obvious but make sure the remodeling estimate you’ve received has come from a licensed and insured contractor. Believe it or not, many contractors have neither.
Either because they never were licensed to begin with or they simply never renewed it (which is very common). What if you’re contractor damages your home or property? Worse, what if they accidentally damage your neighbors property? Do you think they are organized enough to handle it?
Your estimate from a professional remodeling contractor will probably mention the fact they are licensed and insured to do business in your area.
Professional Contractors Have To Pay Employees
Most professional contractors although talented builders and problem solvers, couldn’t do it all on their own. They need a team of talented craftsman (and apprentices) working closely with them on every project.
Employees cost money. If you want good, reliable employees that continually do amazing work for your customers, they cost even more.
If you look at the remodeling contractors in your area that consistently put out the highest quality of work you’ll find they almost always pay their employees very well. The contractor earns the respect of his crew, and they put more effort into your project because they really care.
A large portion of your estimate will go to paying the wages of your contractors employees or sub-contractors used on your project. It is NEVER fair nor good practice to ask your contractor to lower the rates for his crew.
If you think they are too high you might be better off trying to rethink some of the plans you have to see where costs can be saved elsewhere.
Will Any Special Tools or Equipment Be Required?
Some home remodeling projects may require the use of special tools, or speciality equipment that must either be purchased, rented or hired for your project. For example, if your contractor is doing a large landscaping project that involved moving lots of earth they may need to hire the services of a backhoe or an excavator. With that comes an operator, and fuel and transportation, so the costs can add up quickly.
Other special equipment could include machinery rentals, transport costs (think moving heavy material or machinery), consulting fees and more. It’s important you understand what special equipment or services are required for your project and why they are needed. These are costs that will be passed onto you.
What Building Materials or Products Are Being Installed?
The materials you’ve chosen can greatly affect the cost of your remodeling estimate. Most contractors (if they are legit) will get a pretty generous discount on materials from their local suppliers.
Often remodeling contractors will then mark these materials up when they bill them to you, and make a little money off the top. However, there are other contractors who opt to pass the savings onto you and instead earn their money with their expertise and the labour they put into your project.
When you have tile that goes for $2.00 a square foot up to $50+ per square foot and every other building material follows the same scale you can see how the cost of materials will greatly affect your estimate.
Professional Remodeling Contractors Offer A Written Warranty
This is an important one and it’s a little bit deceiving because while some contractors will offer you a warranty on their work, they simply just won’t be around to service it. This is very common with the lowest bids on any home remodeling project. These contractors under value their time because they need the next dollar quick.
It’s not a guarantee that they’ll be around in a year to fix that messed up tile, or the leaking shower. A professional home remodeling contractor will offer you a rock solid warranty, in writing and while that’s still not a guarantee you’ll just have to look at the contractors reputation, the length of time they’ve been in business and how they conduct themselves to make that determination for yourself.
If your warranty information is clearly detailed and explained on the estimate you’ve received then it’s a good sign the remodeling contractor you’re working with is legit.
Who Provides Home Remodeling Estimates in Sequin and McQueeney Texas?
Lonestar Home Solutions is a full service home remodeling and handyman service based out of McQueeney, Texas. If you’re looking for a reliable, honest contractor who’s crew and himself take great pride in the work they do then look no further than Carlos and his team. Give us a call today or fill out one of our online forms to arrange a time for your estimate.